From the smashing of a bottle to launch a ship, the popping of corks at New Year or a wedding, or the spraying from the winners podium of a formula 1 race, champagne is the celebratory drink of choice.
But why do we celebrate with Champagne?
Following the development of sparkling wine in the Sixteenth century in the Languedoc region of France, it seems that Champagne was first produced in the Champagne region in the Eighteenth century. However, it was initially referred to as “the devil’s wine”, due to it’s propensity to explode or pop it’s cork thanks to pressure in the bottle.
Over time and thanks to the work of people such as Dom Perignon, Veuve Clicquot-Ponsardin and Andre Francois, Champagne production became more stable and the taste refined.
Despite that initial stigma, Champagne has long been associated with the anointing of French Kings and was fashionable at the Court of Henry IV.
While royal favour did much to encourage patronisation amongst the nobility, it was in the 19th century and the increasing rise of the middle classes, that Champagne took hold as the sign of celebration. As the new merchant classes rose in number and wealth, so did the purchase of Champagne. While merchants could not afford to drink Champagne every day, they would purchase bottles for special occasions.
So let’s raise a glass in celebration of celebrating with Champagne!
Interested in trying some? We’d love it if you glanced at our range of Champagne!
Image is “Champagne” by Jon Sullivan/PDPhoto.org – http://pdphoto.org/PictureDetail.php?mat=pdef&pg=8346. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.